It has long been known that there are many British expats now making France their home, so there is a ton of advice out there on how to adjust to a totally new way of life when moving across the channel. However, what happens when a resident of Provence finds it necessary to move to the UK? Do a quick internet search on moving to the UK from France and you’ll soon see that most articles bring you from the UK to France. Sadly, that doesn’t help you if you find that your family or work necessitate a move back to England. So, what should you know and what should you do?

Getting Around in the UK

Yes, the UK does have a public transport system where buses and trains run regularly all hours of the day and night, 365 days a year. But, what happens when you need to drive in the UK? Since Brexit, many expats from Provence are asking if their EU licence will still be good for that three-year period or will they need to get a UK driving licence in twelve months like expats from non-European countries.

Until that information becomes clear, it is recommended that you study for a licence, beginning with the written theory portion that is mandatory prior to the practical driving test. You can get all the practice you need for the theory test on sites like, which has a selection of mock theory tests. Once you’ve passed the theory test, you are ready to get your practical driving hours in. Mind you don’t get confused because you are a left-side driver, not RHS as you are accustomed to!

How to Avoid Boring British Cuisine

Although our British neighbours won’t like to hear this, British food is notoriously boring. They don’t readily go in for lovely sauces like we have in Provence with all the rich sauces and desserts we are so famous for. Rather, you’ll likely get tons of places where you can get fish and chips, bangers and mash along with a sampling of cheeses that can’t live up to our famed Camembert, Brie, comté, Roquefort, and Boursin. Yes, you can find it there, but you are more likely to get a variety of sharp cheddars, which cannot match our cheeses for the delicious sauces and fondues we delight in.


Even so, the one thing you will learn about the UK is that they never apologise for their menu. Instead, they are open to cafés and restaurants of all kinds from every ethnic cuisine around the globe. Feel like a good American hamburger tonight? You’ll find American foods from McDonald’s or your local steak house that offers an amazing assortment of American dishes. Whether you want Italian, French, Chinese, Indian, or even an Aussie steak, you will find ethnic foods in almost every big city throughout the UK, so don’t despair just yet.

There you have just a couple of tips on making the move as easy as possible. You won’t find advice here on finding the best relocating company or where to find a flat to your liking, but you will find that food and travel are two things that most relocating advisors seem to gloss over. Looking to relocate to the UK from Provence? Find your favourite foods on Google and, by all means, learn to drive like a lefty! That’s what you need to survive the move.

Tips for a Pain-Free Move from Provence to the UK

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105 thoughts on “Tips for a Pain-Free Move from Provence to the UK

  1. I don’t have any plans to head to that side of the pond, but I sure love cheese. And reminders of where certain cheeses came from and how that leads to the local sauces are always nice.

  2. This may be a double comment….my first one didn’t show up so I apologize if it’s here twice. Wonderful article! I would love to see Europe, bbut it’s impossible now. I was in Canada once for 4 hours.. my one “trip abroad”.

  3. My daughter & her family lived in London for a year because of her husband’s job. She said basically the same thing about the food. Her family (with 4 kids) ate mostly at the fast food places like McDonald’s, Subway, etc. Plus she said it rained a lot and was gloomy most of the time. Needless to say, they couldn’t wait to get back to the US!

  4. I have no desire to move to the IK but would like to visit some day. The article was an enjoyable read.

  5. Even though the likelihood of me moving to another country is virtually nil, I have wondered what it would take as far as the move and the adjusting to a new country. I can’t even imagine driving on the “wrong” side of the road, but I’m sure that would come with time.

  6. Very interesting article and helpful tips. Although I don’t intend to move to the UK I surely love gaining knowledge. I think I will go ahead and try this theory test. Why not right?!

  7. Moving is a difficult thing from within the same country let alone across borders… We moved with a 40 foot container on the seas and it was a challenge but we carried on.. you can do most anything if you want to….

  8. About 20+ years ago, I went to London to help set up an office for a company I was working for. They offered me a job to stay and get everything set up and train new employees. We looked for houses to rent/Let. It is beautiful there, the food was good if you could find a few places. We feel in love with a health food restaurant and went there a lot in the two weeks we were there. We decided against the move, so I just helped train while I was there. These are good tips. Thanks for sharing. I’m sure there is a lot of questions due to Brexit. I hope they get it all straightened out, I know their economy does rely on tourism.

  9. Thank you – I visited several years ago and would love to take my current family there – I think they would love it. We never could figure out why people from UK did not like hamburgers, then we discovered Wimpy’s Burger and quickly discovered – not the same! Thanks for the tips!

  10. I will take the variety cuisines and the boring. I’ll take anyone else’s boring who doesn’t want it too. Just saying.

  11. When we went to Europe, we found out that there is a train that goes through the European Union. We visited six countries! It was fun and educational!! It was great eaten all the other wonderful cuisine!!

  12. The only “foreign” country I’ve ever been to was Canada, and until I get a passport, I can’t even go back there. I always have so many furbabies to care for, and am involved in animal rescue, so going on an extended trip just isn’t in the cards for me (not to mention that vet bills and other expenses keep me too broke to be able to afford to travel anyway). I would love to visit the UK. I’d be interested in trying some of the cafe and pubs you mention.

  13. Good tips but I’ve never been to France or the UK although I would love to visit one day. The cheese in that photo, however, looks delicious and now I’ve got a craving for cheese 🙂

  14. Very informative post, thanks for sharing! My dad just recently went to the UK, but it was only for a visit and not to move.

  15. We are moving at the end of the month, but it will be still in Oregon, so I didn’t find anything too applicable to our move in this article, but I wouldn’t mind visiting the UK some day.

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